Soapbox Summer 2018 - Justin Hodge

Jul 18, 2018

Soapbox Summer 2018-Justin Hodge
Credit Kevin Stone / thekevinstone.com

Justin Hodge would like your vote to be the Washtenaw County Commissioner in District 5.  Here is the candidate's submission to the 2018 WEMU Soapbox Summer.  


Hello WEMU listeners. Thank you for joining me here on Soapbox Summer.  My name is Justin Hodge.  I am running for Washtenaw County Commissioner in District 5, which includes YpsilantiTownship and Augusta Township. 

In the past few years, I had the opportunity to return to Washtenaw County, to a community thathelped shape me as I pursued higher education.  I married my amazing wife, and we decided tosettle down in Ypsilanti Township, where we recently purchased our first home.  I want to serveour community as your next County Commissioner because, as a social worker and an activeleader in the county Democratic Party, I have seen first-hand how decisions made at local levelsof government can provide life to the vital services and programs community members useeveryday, but I also see the damage done when the most vulnerable populations in ourcommunities are not made a priority, when powerful and prominent interests dominate theconversation.  I am running as an advocate - an empowering voice for residents of EasternWashtenaw County.  Putting people first is the core of my campaign. 

As a resident of Ypsilanti Township, I was elected to serve our community as both the Chair ofthe Eastern Washtenaw Democratic Club and the Vice-Chair of the Legislative ProgramsCommittee for the Washtenaw County Democratic Party.  I also serve on the Sheriff’sCommunity Advisory Board for Law Enforcement where I bring a social justice perspective tothe board.  In these roles, I advocate for socially and economically just policies, but to make aneven greater impact on the community I want to bring my experience to the Washtenaw CountyBoard of Commissioners. 

I am committed to taking action on the decision our voters made to pass a millage for mentalhealth and public safety that will improve services and better the lives of our residents.  As asocial worker, I have been dedicated to mental health services, providing therapy to childrenand families, case management to individuals with developmental disabilities, and coordinatingclinics for children in crisis.  My one-on-one work with people informs my perspective as aneducator.  I teach graduate-level social policy classes, empowering students to engage with thepolicy challenges facing our community and preparing them to be our next change makers.  The biggest challenge facing our county is economic disparity, which leads to problems withhousing affordability, access to quality healthcare, and the issues facing our public educationsystem. Ypsilanti Township and Augusta Township deserve a representative on the CountyCommission committed to ensuring that the eastern part of the county has the equitable accessto services and programs that our communities need to thrive.  Decisions made on how todistribute tax payer dollars in this county concern my family, my hardworking neighbors, and ourbeautiful community. I stand for Ypsilanti Township.  I stand for Augusta Township.  I stand foryou. 

To make my vision for a socially and economically just Washtenaw County a reality, we needyour support.  Please consider supporting our campaign to put people first by donating or joiningour team.  Whether it’s $5 or $500, any amount that you can contribute will have a powerfulimpact on our campaign. 

Thank you to WEMU’s Soapbox Summer and all of you listers out there.  To learn more aboutmy campaign to put people first, visit my website at votejustinhodge.com.  That’s vote - Justin -H-O-D-G-E - dot com.   The election is August 7th, and I am asking for your vote and support.  Ilove and respect our home, and I know you do too.  Let’s fight for it together.  Vote for me, JustinHodge, for Washtenaw County Commissioner!